For the single parents among us, you will probably nod your heads at what I am about to type.
I love my kids…. I greatly enjoy watching them celebrate their end of the year successes, with dance and sports, and graduations, but each year at this time, the over abundance of family time has me reaching for the Xanax. There is simply too much family time with my ex-husband appearing at every event that he never appeared at while we were married.
It is simply too much to deal with.
Last night, I stared for 2 hours at my ex husbands wedding band, as the music teachers seemed to find endless configurations to dazzle the parents with band, orchestra, chorus, chorale and just overall gushing at the talent of the kids who worked so hard to present a really lovely evening.
The modest gold band on his ring finger mocked me, as he nodded off during the performance. He sat with us, of course. Me, still seeking his approval, offered to save him a seat when he complained about the time of the show, and him, over-tired from his own importance.
He woke up to remind me of dates and deadlines for college tests, and to scold me as if I would ever forget anything related to my children, and as if, he ever actually took it upon himself to make any schedules or plans. He reminded me that he works. As if I spend my days lounging with my Kindle and a bottle of wine and chocolates.
So, back to the ring…. It mocked me in the dark, as any glimmer from someones cell phone lit up around us. I don’t miss him; I don’t want him back, but that ring symbolizes his seemingly flawless transition from one family to another. His obligatory appearances flash neon as reminders of the first decade of our marriage, when people used to ask me if I was single, because Dad rarely, if ever appeared at school events.
I was the mom who shopped for jock straps during baseball season… Yep… I would love to plan payback, and send him to buy my daughter her first bra, but I simply would not do that to her. She deserves better, and I won’t use her to extract payback for his lack of involvement as his sons grew.
So, today, I vent, and I bitch. I have already vented to BFF, who LOL’d me until I figured I better stop complaining.
So, here I sit… watching the videos that I recorded, feeling a bit guilty for the wasted time and energy, wishing I had more control over my feelings… hating myself for the negative thoughts and feelings and even possible jealousy I felt last night.
I ended the night taking my daughter to meet with all her friends to get ice cream to celebrate. The mom who got there first, arrived with her second husband and their beautiful new baby boy.
I smiled at his newness, and his baby smell. Jealous at their new beginning, and of the absolute loveliness of the new start that she found for herself.
Trying to twist my less than attractive green self into a more positive being, I ended the night with these thoughts…. Her first child grew up as an only child. Mine, have been blessed to have each other and I have been blessed to have them.
I have had new beginnings, but they just haven’t been right for me… so I need to keep searching for the one that will make me, if not gloriously happy, like the scent of a new baby, but at least more at ease with myself and how I see my future.
I certainly am not proud of my inner turmoil last night.
I will do better today.
Erika Pierce says
Thank you for accurately articulating this kind of moment and for sharing it. This has happened to me more times than I care to remember.
May I address how absolutely clueless your ex is? To fall asleep during his own children’s performances? That, that right there speaks volumes…
From one single mom to another, I wish you a Happy Mother’s Day! (Sorry Cleo for borrowing your words, but they are righteous!!) Here’s to many many more years of embracing our “motherly instincts and witchy intuition” 🙂
Virginia Masters says
Happy Mother’s Day to you as well, and thank you for taking the time to reply.
I love your mention of “witchy intuition”; it reminds me of my mother, who always seemed to know what was ABOUT to happen.
I had a feeling this post was going to hit some nerves because it is such a universally miserable feeling for all single moms, to want the best for their children, but to be emotionally divided by their own needs. Sometimes, I feel the desire to just hide in my home, in order to avoid participation, but I know that isn’t the right way to proceed. The feelings of our children must be the priority, no matter how hard it may be for us.
So, cheers to you Erika ( and Cleo) and all you moms out there, but especially the single moms who often have to choke back a few tears in order to smile.
Keep on reading!